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The Potential of Blockchain Technology in the Transition towards Sustainable Food Systems

Fernqvist, Fredrik and Wünsche, Julia Francesca (2022). The Potential of Blockchain Technology in the Transition towards Sustainable Food Systems. Sustainability. 14 :13 , 7739
[Research article]

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Food systems are both contributing to and affected by environmental degradation and climate change. The transition towards resilient and sustainable food systems is essential to ensure food security and minimise negative environmental impacts. Innovative technologies can accelerate this transition. Blockchain technology (BCT) is attracting attention as it can deliver transparency to complex global food supply chains and has the potential to guide current food production towards better sustainability and efficiency. This case study investigated the opportunities that BCT can offer to food supply chains. Qualitative interviews with eight main BCT providers were conducted to evaluate the current state of BCT and put it into perspective by mapping out advantages, disadvantages, incentives, motives, and expectations connected to its implementation in global food systems. A thematic analysis showed that, while BCT was considered beneficial by all interviewees, uptake is slow due to high implementation costs and the lack of incentives for companies throughout the food chain from farms to food industry and retail. Results further revealed that the advantages of BCT go beyond communication of trustworthy information and development of closer producer–consumer relationships. In fact, it can provide the opportunity to decrease food waste, enhance working conditions throughout the supply chain, and promote sustainable consumption habits. As BCT may be increasingly used in the food supply chain, the results give a basis for future research that may leverage both qualitative and quantitative methods to examine actors’ behaviours. Also, the importance of improving user experiences through functional applications and software to facilitate the adoption of the technology is stressed.

Authors/Creators:Fernqvist, Fredrik and Wünsche, Julia Francesca
Title:The Potential of Blockchain Technology in the Transition towards Sustainable Food Systems
Series Name/Journal:Sustainability
Year of publishing :2022
Article number:7739
Number of Pages:15
Associated Programs and Other Stakeholders:Z - SLU - Library > Odla mera
Publication Type:Research article
Article category:Scientific peer reviewed
Version:Published version
Copyright:Creative Commons: Attribution 4.0
Full Text Status:Public
Subjects:(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 5 Social Sciences > 509 Other Social Sciences > Social Sciences Interdisciplinary (Peace and Conflict Research and Studies on Sustainable Society)
(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 2 Engineering and Technology > 207 Environmental Engineering > Environmental Management
Keywords:blockchain, sustainability, food systems, food supply chains, transparency, agri-food, traceability
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Additional ID:
Type of IDID
Web of Science (WoS)000822207000001
ID Code:28452
Faculty:LTV - Fakulteten för landskapsarkitektur, trädgårds- och växtproduktionsvetenskap
Department:(LTJ, LTV) > Department of People and Society (from 2021)
Deposited By: SLUpub Connector
Deposited On:16 Aug 2022 10:26
Metadata Last Modified:17 Aug 2022 04:00

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